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Sign Language

by David Westheimer


When Dody and I moved from Houston to Los Angeles more than 40 years ago one of the first things we noticed was that folks in show business were astrologically challenged. Everyone we met in the Industry would ask right after we were introduced, “What’s your sign?”

Being born in April, I would say, “Aries,” though I really don’t take much stock in that folderol. Anyhow, they would almost always exclaim, “I knew it!” So I quit saying, “Aries.” I said, “Armadillo.”

“Armadillo? I never heard of that.”

“Oh,” I’d explain, ”that’s my Texas sign.”

In time, I developed an entire set of astrological signs, the Lone Star Zodiac, much more fitting for my native state. My daughter-in-law, Karen, a gifted painter-illustrator, painted drawings of all 12 Loner Star Zodiac signs to go with them. The Lone Star Zodiac was eventually published in a booklet. (It is now resting comfortably in the 1,805,800th spot on the Amazon sales list.)

Anyhow, here they are:

January— The month of Spindletop

Road Runner — You are fast on your feet and never saw a path you could wait to travel at high speed. To you it’s the getting there that counts, not the destination. You do not brake for fools.

February — The month of the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo

Javelina —You are thick-skinned, tend to be shortsighted, and are not picky about what you eat. You are at home in your environment and fear nothing, even snakes. You do not often smile, being a person of serious mien.

March — The month of Sam Houston’s birthday and Texas Independence Day

Longhorn — Your sign is a fusion of two major influences, so you tend to extremes. One moment you will face a mountain lion, the next time you may bolt for no reason. You have strength and endurance in abundance and are fond of football.

April — The month of San Jacinto Day

Armadillo — You are gentle despite your apparent surface hardness, You are shy and in the presence of danger tend to go into your shell and wait for things to improve. You cross life’s highways with eyes fixed firmly on your goal, looking neither left nor right.

May — The month of Cinco de Mayo and the Electra Goat Cookoff

Boll Weevil — The adjective that describes you best is pesky. Folks find it hard to get through your protective shell. You are sometimes boring but when you show up people pay attention.

June — The month of Juneteenth

Puma — You are graceful and keep yourself well-groomed. You are not likely to cause anybody trouble as long as they don’t mess with you. You like long, nighttime rambles.

July — The month of Miss Ima Hogg’s birthday

Mockingbird — You are flighty, with music in your heart. You pay no attention to the clock, being ready to party day or night. You are only satisfied when at the highest pinnacle.

August —The month of Lyndon Johnson’s birthday

Horned Toad — You have a rugged exterior but are basically soft underneath. You are jumpy and have a quick tongue. Children love you but you find it hard to warm up to them.

September— The month of J. Frank Dobie’s birthday

Sidewinder — You are shy but not to be messed with. Angered, you strike out. without a thought of the consequences. You find it difficult to get straight to the point.

October — The month of Lorenzo de Zavala’s birthday

Racoon — You are fastidious to a fault and always as neat as two pins. You are a night person and do your best work after the sun goes down. You are apt to mask your feelings.

November — The month of the opening of deer season

Mudcat — You like to get to the bottom of things and if you find a mess there can be counted on to clean it up. Some might call you slippery, but when handled right you are okay. If rubbed the wrong way you are prickly.

December — The month of the Anson Cowboys’ Christmas Ball

Bronco — Anyone looking for a free ride at you expense does so at his own risk. You won’t be manipulated or reined in. With you, the buck starts here.


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